I Had a Bad Dream the Other Night

19 Jul

I saw enormous Arctic wastes melting into dirty slush, through which disconsolate white bears shuffled, trying to understand this apocalypse. I saw drilling towers, and oil spills floating on the sea. I saw seals, walruses, colonies of birds, all at a loss. I saw the frozen tundras of Siberia and Alaska, melting, billions of tonnes of water flowing into the seas, plumes of methane flaring into the sky.

I saw heat, I saw the air quivering with it, I saw thirst.

I saw Russian trucks and bulldozers building deep-water ports all along the northern coast, ready for what they believed would be the next boom in shipping. I saw soldiers, planes, runways. In preparation for war.

In Iran, I saw the lifting of sanctions, and the basic effect of this: Russia, able to supply nothing more useful than missiles and nuclear power stations. Eagerly selling these wherever it could.

In America, I saw a lot political clowns waving their arms and talking nonsense, unable to distinguish between TV and reality. In the streets I saw countless people being shot, while in Washington DC a lot of pasty-faced fools argued about guns and how they were a fundamental freedom. I saw America’s obsessive spending on arms, its boundless belief in commerce and free trade, again without any real purpose to its love of lucre.

In China, I saw empty minds pushing for growth and development. I saw fumes and pollution hanging over its cities, I saw children born with weak lungs and bad hearts. In the South China Seas I saw barges and ships dredging up the sea bed and making small islands, covering these in barracks and runways. More war.

In South America, I saw enormous inflows of money from China and the BRICS, railways cut through pristine jungles, oil wells sunk in Amazonia and Yasuni even thought the world was already over-supplied with oil and we HAD TO, HAD TO start investing seriously in clean energy. But we had no intention of doing it, because we were small-minded and fixed and had no ideas about the future.

Everywhere, I saw little concern for people. The you and the I. Wherever I looked we were being ignored or locked up or tortured or kept on intellectual and moral bread and water… Wherever I looked I saw a small group of industrialists and multinational stars flying about in private planes, sitting on white beaches, swaggering, convinced that they had attained some kind of blessed state. The important ones. They were mainly playing violins very badly while their cities were burning. Feeding their senses, feeding their ravenous lust to have things, to be things, to define themselves by what they owned.

I saw no leadership, no vision for the human race. I saw little greatness in the human spirit.

I saw no concern for the telling of truth, the liberation of the human mind, I saw no let-up from commerce and the strangulation and pursuit of money.

And then when I woke up I saw my dog lying in the garden under a rosemary bush, finding some shade for itself, stretching out its little body and savouring the fragrance of the foliage overhead. And I thought to myself, I wish people could be as happy and satisfied as my dog, who asks for so little.

As I watch my dog I realise he is also dreaming. His little legs are kicking. He is chasing a rabbit through the grass. He is purposeful, he is not epic in his desires.

Even his dreams are better.



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